Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Eighteen Kids . . . And Counting

Have you guys seen any of the documentaries on Discovery Health Channel about the Duggar family? They’re the family in Arkansas that has 17 kids. That’s right, seventeen kids. The youngest is 9 months old and the oldest is 20.

Well, guess what? The mother, Michelle Duggar, is pregnant with number 18.

I’ve watched the documentaries and I have to admit that the kids seem to be happy, cared for and well-adjusted. I admire their principle of not buying anything on credit, never going into debt. And with all the horribly dysfunctional families out there, it’s difficult to criticize the Duggars for their lifestyle choices.

But how in the world does that mom have time to produce eighteen kids???

The family is fundamentalist Baptist, they home-school all the kids, and even have church services at home. Their favorite family recipe is tater-tot casserole. Obviously, mom and dad have a pretty robust sex life. But how??

With seventeen kids in the house, that’s 34 ears listening in. She’s been pregnant for a total of eleven years of her life. It seems like after 18 kids if hubby got the least bit amorous, he'd be sleeping on the porch. Any fun stuff would be a solo activity from here on out.

What if they got divorced? With sixteen kids under the age of eighteen, that’s about $8,000 a month in child support. It seems to me that a parent shouldn’t have more kids than they can pay child support for.

Yes, I’m sure the documentaries we see are well edited. I’m sure that TV viewers are shielded from the realities of seventeen kids under one roof. Tantrums, exploding diapers, puking, ear-piercing shrieks, fighting and general mayhem all end up on the editing room floor. The slamming of doors, alone, has got to be mind-boggling.
I have two younger brothers. Brothers try their best to kill each other. I remember tying my youngest brother to the side of the house, climbing on the roof and spitting on him when I was about fourteen. He was awfully noisy about it.
Then there was the time I locked my younger brother in a rabbit hutch which was perched on a wagon and sent it careening down the steep driveway.
There are ten boys in this family. Get the picture?

And the smell. My god, the smell! All those diapers and teenagers have got to make the place smell like a dead fruit-bat. Meanwhile, mom is knee-deep in tater-tot casserole.

Frankly, I’ll be more interested to see a documentary titled “The Duggars: Twenty Years Later.” Time will tell how they truly turn out.



At 12:39 PM , Blogger Kimberly Ann said...

Having born one child, endured a horrendous caesarean with a long month of complications (I know, TMI), I can't imagine doing it again 17 more times. Holy smokes, I gotta give that woman snaps for sheer stamina. She must buy Wheaties by the carload.

At 2:05 PM , Blogger Lorraine said...

I....I...18 kids?

At 4:44 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a good friend that has 9 brothers and 1 sister. He's somewhere in the middle and is now 50 years old. His family is close and they all stay in touch. Raised in a small town in rural NY, all the boys played sports. The coaches had a "new LaLonde" every year for 10 running. He once asked his dad "why so many?" The reply? "I just love the way your mom looks when she's pregnant."

Being a father of 3, I can't even imagine having 11, or 18, or even 4. God, think of the GrandKids! 324 if they each had 18 more!

At 10:16 PM , Blogger Miss Healthypants said...

That's just insane. And yes, likely quite smelly.

At 5:05 AM , Blogger Speck said...

There's nothing else to do up in them thar hills of Arkansaw exceptin' to procreate.

At 11:58 AM , Blogger heat said...

The funniest thing I've seen about this family is an email forward I received a few months ago. It was a family portrait, with the rents and all the spawn, and below the picture was a caption that said, "It's a P@$$Y, not a clown car." Hey, to each their own.

At 5:34 PM , Blogger sfoofie said...

I just think of the eldest kid...I think he's 20. Still living at home. home-schooled. home-churched. They all look happy and fine and I don't have too much of a problem with the situation until they will all be in their 30s living at home. Are the parents going to make them marry each other?!? They really need to have the kids expand the horizons a bit, dontcha think???


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